Plants progress through a temporal sequence of juvenile, adult, and reproductive phases, each marked by the expression of phase-specific traits. Here we show that loss-of-function mutations in ZIPPY (ZIP) cause the premature expression of adult vegetative traits but do not accelerate the onset of reproductive competence or flowering time. ZIP encodes ARGONAUTE7 (AGO7), one of ten members of the ARGONAUTE family in Arabidopsis. In addition to playing developmental roles, some ARGONAUTE family members are required for RNAi-like phenomena, such as posttranscriptional gene silencing. In contrast to Arabidopsis ARGONAUTE1, ZIP has no significant role in transgene silencing; its primary function is in the regulation of developmental timing.